The U.S. trade deficit soared 27% in 2021 from the previous year to $859.1 billion, during President Biden’s first year in office, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported Tuesday.
In the last month of the year, the deficit rose 1.8% over November to $80.7 billion, coinciding with the holiday shopping season.
The value of exports rose $394.1 billion in 2021 to $2.528 trillion, while the value of imports rose even more ($576.5 billion to $3.387 trillion).
The deficit in the trade balance over the past year was determined by the large weight of goods, whose negative balance increased by 18.3% over 2020, while the surplus that the United States traditionally records in services fell by 5.6%.
Last year, the trade deficit represented 3.7% of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP), up from the 3.2% it represented in 2020.
In 2021, the U.S. trade deficit with politically-sensitive China rose by $45 billion to $355.3 billion; with the European Union it increased by $35.4 billion to $219.6 billion.
For December, the value of exports advanced by a slight 1.5% over the previous month to $228.1 billion, while imports grew by almost the same amount, 1.6%, to $308.9 billion.